The types of cyberbullying aren’t always blatant. They’re certainly nothing like what most parents experienced growing up. So, protect your kids from these new monsters or pay the piper when they grow up. Here’s what you need to know.
What are the 5 different types of cyberbullying
Cyberbullying is dangerous because it’s creepy and often hard to detect. In fact, it doesn’t even look like bullying half the time. That means you need to stand guard against these attacks, and you begin by knowing your enemy. These are the five types of threats you need to watch out for:
- Straight-Up Harassment – This is where the bully sends offensive or hurtful messages to your child even after your child asks them to stop.
- Purposeful Exclusion – If your kid gets left out of groups with so-called “friends” for no apparent reason, they’re being bullied.
- Hurtful Outing – This is when trust is broken by the bully telling secrets and/or lies about your child on a public forum.
- Shaming – Your kid is getting bullied when someone shames them for something they can’t help or change.
- Stalking – This is where the bully refuses to leave your child alone to the point of making a fake social media account to harass them.
Keep in mind that some bullying tactics are actually illegal, which means you can get someone in trouble if they don’t stop bothering your baby. Talk to local law enforcement or contact a private attorney for more information.
How do kids respond to online bullies?
Understand how the average child responds to negative interactions that way you can stop it in its tracks. Remember, not all cyberbullying is obvious or immediately harmful. So, your kids might not come right out and say they’re being attacked. It’s your job to figure that out and here’s how you do it.
Step One: Look for the Common Signs of Depression
Online bullies can make your children feel sad and withdrawn. Your kids might also begin changing their behaviors and appearance to fit in with their oppressors, so keep an eye on their moods.
Step Two: Watch Their Behaviors After Screen Time
Houston, we might have a problem if your child’s demeanor changes drastically after they get offline. Look for sudden changes in behavior or mood to stop small issues from being life-changing problems.
Step Three: Pay Attention to Their Friends
As a parent, you should know everybody that your child associates out with, including their friends, teachers, and classmates. Use that knowledge to pinpoint the bully and then nip it in the bud.
Talking to your kids about the types of cyberbullying
You never know who else has been seeing a problem, so voice your concerns. That way, you can figure out the real problem faster and then find a solution that keeps your child safe (but not sheltered). Just remember that there are always two sides to every story. In other words, your child might be the one doing the bullying, so keep an open mind and address everything with compassion.